…and yet God she’d scarcely got to know.
                                              – Rainer Maria Rilke (“Eve”)

In our minds we have tried to recreate Eden:
worry-free and unabashed as we disrobe
and stride the creek, lounge with the beasts
and birds in harmony, grazing as we go.

And ever since the golden quince, we yearn
for ignorance, for distance from the news,
for the discarded leaf to hide beneath
during thunderstorms of more information.

All becomes a garden when the serpent
leaves deep portals to the underworld
to crawl among the sweet and sour berries,
as Tihpiknit’s right-hand man—to keep us

honest, dispatching the deceitful—where
rivers of fish, wild meat, bone and hide
fat with acorns see through the eyes of trees
and listen to the birds to forecast weather.

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